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INDIANAPOLIS, IN (August 18, 2021) – Zach Cattell, president of the Indiana Health Care Association and Indiana Center for Assisted Living (IHCA/INCAL) made the following statement today regarding the Biden Administration’s announcement on requiring nursing home staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in a forthcoming regulation:
“IHCA/INCAL appreciates the Biden Administration’s continued efforts to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates across the nation, both in the community and in long term care settings. The action announced by the Administration to mandate nursing facilities, alone, does not go far enough. COVID-19 vaccination mandates for health care personnel should be applied to all health care settings. Without an across-the-board mandate for all health care settings, the nursing facility only action will exacerbate already difficult workforce challenges.”
“Several Indiana nursing home providers have already instituted employer mandates for COVID-19 vaccination and many more are planning to roll them out when the vaccines are fully authorized by the FDA. Indiana’s nursing facility staff continue to fight COVID-19 and nursing facility leadership continue to provide education on the importance of vaccination. However, a federal mandate that applies only to nursing facilities will cause vaccine hesitant workers to flee to other health care providers that do not have to follow a mandate and leave many facilities without adequate staff to care for residents. We ask the Biden administration to work directly with our providers and national association partners to address this challenge.”
IHCA/INCAL is the state’s largest trade association and advocacy group representing for-profit and not-for-profit nursing homes, as well as assisted living communities and independent living. The association provides education, information, and advocacy for health care providers, consumers, and the workforce on behalf of its more than 460-member facilities.